Samuel Pomeroy Colt (1852-1921) was a Bristol industrialist, banker, politician and philanthropist responsible for much of the financial well being of late 19th century Bristol and Rhode Island.
Born in New Jersey, Colt and his mother, Theodora DeWolf Colt, were in Bristol by 1865 living at Linden Place, built by his DeWolf grandfather and bought back into the family by his older brother Edward. To settle any confusions, it should be noted here that it was not Samuel but his uncle, also named Samuel Colt, who was famous for his invention of the Colt revolver in Hartford, CT.
Samuel Pomeroy Colt was successful and became very wealthy in his own right because of his brilliance and financial abilities. He went from Bristol to study at MIT in Cambridge and followed that up by going to Columbia Law School in New York. He later became a very successful lawyer and a foremost authority on the topic of corporate law. He also was elected Rhode Island's Attorney General eight times! In Bristol, he joined the Board of Directors of the National India Rubber Company which was failing and reorganized it to be the very successful United States Rubber Company and UniRoyal which employed much of Bristol. He led a colorful life and traveled extensively. He was also the owner of what we know today as Colt State Park in Bristol.
Claire Benson, Society Board Member, has done extensive research on Colt as well as other members of his family for the past six years. She divides her time between living in Bristol and in San Jose, CA. She has volunteered at the Society as a researcher for nearly 15 years. In San Jose, she was the former Planning Commissioner for over 10 years. She has done research on the Bristol-Cuba connection and the West African Slave Trade, focusing on the many Bristolians who lived in Cuba during the first half of the 19th century. In addition, Benson is an expert genealogist having researched her 17th century Rhode Island ancestors including the familiar names of early Bristol including Sanford, Smith, DeWolf, Diman, Alger, Howe and Munro.
This will entail a number of small events as well as an exhibit at the Society of our World War I posters and other items collected from local veterans over the years. The exhibit will include the WAC uniform and other items donated by Lieutenant Colonel Ruth Briggs, colorful Bristol resident and an aide-de-camp to President Eisenhower in WW II, fiancee of President Roosevelt's son, Elliot, and later host, friend and confidant of Svetlana Stalin.